Friday, January 02, 2004

Janvani to focus on rural issues

Sampad Mahapatra
Friday, January 2, 2004 (Bhubaneswar):

In an attempt to give a voice to those who have been largely ignored by the mainstream media, Janvani newspaper has been launched in Orissa. The daily will highlight the issues and problems of the dalits, adivasis and the rural poor.

The newspaper was launched in Gopinathpur village, 12 kilometres away from Bhubaneswar, by a local village elder who formally released the inaugural edition.

"No newspaper talks about us. They report matters of little value to us. Do they ever talk about how the poor are treated and how they have to struggle to fill their stomachs?" said Sudam Kanugo, village elder, Gopinathpur

Janavani described as India's only rural based social daily was launched on the New Year's day in similar fashion across all the 314 blocks in Orissa.

Parallel media

The publishers, Janavani Charitable Trust have been toying with the idea for the past five years during which they trained over 800 young men and women from rural and tribal dominated areas in the art of reporting.

Priced at one rupee, the four-page daily is perhaps the first major experiment in parallel media in the country.

"Our focus is development of those who are underdeveloped and are deprived of the benefits of development. That's our priority they are our clientele, they will be our readers and they will also be the source of information," said Dr Radhakant Nayak, Chief Editor, Janvaani.

The editorial policy of Janavani will be to concentrate on the events, issues and realities of the 50,000-odd villages across the state. It will also give voice to the millions of people who have been largely ignored both by the media and the policy makers so far.

Source: NDTV, January 2, 2004

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